Lately I read an interview with David LaChapelle who is one oft he most famous photographers of modern age and it was somewhat surprising to me when they asked him about what he sees as the greatest achievement he said "being a decent human being". Nothing related to photography or fame or money. Now that many of my friends are starting to have children and I have a godson as well who is turning 1,5 years now I tend to think what values we will show as example to the upcoming generations.
Because I believe much more in the power of example than preaching or theories. Surely it is not the most easy times we are living at. There are so many questions: political questions, questions about virtual and real lives, the effect of stress on our mental and physical wellbeing and the purely existentialist question in the end: what are we actually stressing about so much?
There is a lot of hypocrisy as it has always been. We do not have to go so far when we want to see examples for ignorance towards human suffering and desperation. Even in the 21st century in times of humanitarian catastrophes the will to help is not essential but something voluntary- though there are very strong examples on the voluntary front which give a reason for hope.
I want to believe that at least in every family there is one person who we can look up to who shows a silent but consistent example for goodness. Who treats people well and equally, who teaches youngsters how to respect old people, who does not look down on minorities, who rather gives instead of just taking all the time.
I think we should remember these examples from our lives and also think about what the kids will remember us for. What do we teach to the children of our friends, our godchildren and the other children around us. Do we want to teach them that one person is more than other because of religion or nationality? That it is the phones and the cars what define a person? We might not even think about these things intentionally. But they see everything we say and do and they decode it for themselves.